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Posts Tagged ‘Meals on Wheels’

8th Apr Update …

Hi all,

This is a short update to advise the results for the 31st Mar Interest Notifications.

The notifications came from three different groups –

  1. Carers with direct access and responsibility to their clients,
  2. Respite centre operators, and
  3. Direct response notifications by mail, fax or E-Mail …

Each were asked to nominate the TIER level of interest – where

  1. TIER 1 = This grouping being represented by persons with severe disabilities who require full/part-time carers.
  2. TIER 2 = This group being represented by self-help disability pensioners, and other pensioners with mobility issues and wish to become involved in a healthier aqua therapy/exercise program on a regular basis.
  3. TIER 3 = This group being represented by all the other ‘pensioner’ groups, including self funded retirees, and people living independently who want to be part of a healthier exercise program to maintain their independent lifestyles.
  4. TIER 4 = For persons under the age of 18

The results were expected to yield interest levels of 300-500 and these numbers have been exceeded – only a small fraction (10%) of Carer groups provided numbers.

It is known that HACC provide services to over 600 clients and in discussions with the Management – they generally agreed that their clients would all benefit from a program like this.  They and many like them have not provided interest numbers in any formal way that can be used in this survey.  Quite a number of their Carers clients do not have the ability to complete forms – nor do the Carer staff have the time in their normal routine to chase down the advocates who would be required to complete the forms to indicate interest.  It is just known that the Carer clients would benefit from a aqua-therapy program if it were available.

This was a very sensitive issue from the Carers perspective – and I am now acutely aware of how the initial survey requests did not fully appreciate this fact.

So with respect to the numbers below – firstly let me say – the program still remains focused on gaining access to the Council pools for the Tier 2 and 3 group as a first priority.  The TIER 1 and 4 group will require specific funding to enable the paid employ to staff and safely manage a program that can provide an aqua-therapy program for this group.  The Association when formed and Incorporated will pursue the funding requiements for these Tier Levels post haste.

Some Tier 2 and 3 participants will require carer’s in the pool environment i.e. learn to swim issues etc – and they will also have to wait until the funding has been sourced – and for the program structured to meet all workplace health and safety requirements – and for the Council to complete the necessary upgrades to comply with some of these requirements.

There are many Tier 2 and 3 participants who currently use the pool and/or will want to become part of the Association – will be able to start using the pool as members of the Association immediately Council grant access – and hopefully that access cost will match the Gladstone Council efforts in providing free access to Association Members between 7:30 – 9:00 am Monday to Friday.

The non-individual numbers below come from 5 Carers – and 5 Respite Centres out of more than 50+ carer and respite providers in the Fraser Coast  Community who were contacted.

Interest Notification Numbers:

Carer/Respite Name: Interest Level Notifications: Totals
Tier 1 Tier 2 Tier 3 Tier 4
Individual Notifications: 9 32 30 6 77
Respite Care Notifications: 6 56 59 0 121
Carer Notifications: 117 189 175 0 481
Totals: 132 277 264 6 679

These numbers exceeded initial expectations and is more than a qualifying number for the Association to take seriously the need for an Aqua-Therapy program targeting disability and elderly participants.

Research has shown that in 2009 –

  • more than 5,500 people living in the Fraser Coast Community were receiving a disability pension –
  • more than 30,000 of the population of 99,000 are aged 55 or over –
  • more than 14,000 were receiving the aged pension –

This is a very large portion of the Fraser Coast community – all aided and assisted by:

  • the Blue Care services,
  • the Palliative care services,
  • the HACC, OzCare, and other Church Carer services,
  • the physio providers,
  • the Doctors and Nurses
  • and all the other connected – Meals on Wheels, house cleaning, etc …

This population drives a very large part of all employment and other commerce in this area.  It is time for the Council to address the local services it provides to these residents who choose to live in this area.  These residents want to exercise – but because of age and ware and tear – they need a soft environment to allow them to exercise without  the associated pain and suffering – that means water …

The pension income does not allow them to attend the pool at $3.70 a visit – or with a Dr’s Certificate at 50% of that cost – they need regular pool access and season ticket discounts is one way of assisting – another way is to allow members of this proposed Association free access and for the Association to negotiate an arrangement with Council that provides access – and at a cost that can be afforded.

Council will be wanting this group to exercise – else the medical and health care resources in this community will be further drained of capacity – and lessen the services they currently offer – unless additional funding can be provided.

Current Status:

A small steering committee was formed last Friday and a second meeting of that committee is to be held on Tuesday next – the main aim of this Committee to to plan the first General Meeting for the Association at which there will be elected a Management Committee for the Association.

The Association needs Business and Community Leader interest to fill some of the senior positions on this Management Committee.  Please – if you know someone that would want to become involved with a program like this at the Management Committee level – can you please advise me using this e-mail address: fcata@bigpond.com or contact me by phone on 07-41 941 081 … or contact the concerned party and let them know about the program and pass these details on.

The Association cannot progress until we have the General Meeting and get this Management Committee …

In closing I want to thank all the Carer and Respite Centre Managers for their assistance in procuring the numbers they submitted.  Hopefully this program will soon be able to provide to your members an aqua-therapy program that will please all …  Thank you again.

bye for now …

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